Methacton boys, girls sink Pottsgrove in PAC-10 opener

AUDUBON >> It was the start the Warriors had been searching for.

After dropping two non-league meets last week, Methacton opened up the PAC-10 regular season with a win over Pottsgrove on Tuesday afternoon at Methacton High School.

“We put last week behind us and focused on this meet,” said Methacton boys head coach John Welsh. “It’s always good to get that first win out of the way. A lot of our guys are still falling into place, but it’s definitely good to open up the regular season with a win.”

The boys defeated Pottsgrove, 106-68 while the girls won 109-61.

Gil Price led the Warriors’ charge, touching first in the 200-yard freestyle (1:54.43) and the 100 free (49.42) while anchoring the 200 medley (1:48.46) and swimming first leg in the 200 free relay (1:35.53).

Price, a state qualifier in the 100 free last season, knows the team is just beginning to take shape as the season gets underway.

“We did a lot of good things, which is really great to see,” he said, “but we know there’s a lot of work left. We’ve got a much smaller team than we did last season, but already we’ve had people step up.”

Michael Palumbo and Austin D’Angelo took a step forward with individual wins in the 500 free (5:17.59) and the 100 breast (1:04.27), respectively. The pair also swam in the Warriors’ 200 medley relay and the 200 free relay with Price.

“We’re trying to figure out who belongs where, and I think today was a pretty strong showing, especially considering how early it is in the year,” said Welsh.

Kevin Basch, a state qualifier last season, led the way for Pottsgrove, taking first place in the 200 individual medley (2:07.79) and the 100 butterfly (59.03).

In his first year at the helm, new Pottsgrove head coach Alex Diehl says his team is making strides. After spending last season coaching a miniscule Pottstown team that competed for only qualifying times, this season is a whole new experience.

Although there will be a learning curve in his first season with the Falcons, Diehl is confident in his team.

“We’re still trying to figure out our best relay combinations, said Diehl. “We definitely have the pieces, it’s just a matter of getting everyone together. Right now it’s all about posting good splits and times.”

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After taking a year off this past season, Ben Yoder is back on board with the girls program.

Now in his 10th year with the program, Yoder knows getting that first win can sometimes be the most important.

Methacton’s Emily Sykes finished first in three events Tuesday. (Mercury file photo)

“This is a good way for us to start out,” he said. “Some of the girls really stepped up and swam well in some events that they don’t normally compete in. That’s something that definitely gives us a lot to look forward to — being able to make changes to our lineup and still see results.”

Methacton’s relay team of Victoria Zang, Emily Sykes, Sarah Lebold and Anna Price touched first in the 200 medley relay (1:56.44) and the 200 freestyle relay (1:46.16). Sykes also had a first place finish in the 200 IM, finishing up at 2:10.93.

“It’s exciting,” said Sykes of the team getting its first win of the year. “I think everyone was ready to get this win and get our regular season started the right way.”

On the Pottsgrove side, Emily Glinecke and Courtney Sheffer posted two individuals wins apiece.

Glinecke finished first in the 200 free (1:58.02) and the 500 free (5:11.90) while Sheffer swam the 100 back (1:08.05) and the 50 free (28.28). The two were also a part of the Falcons’ first place 400 free relay team (4:18.55) which also included Lizzy Galamba and Elese Christ.

“I’m very happy with a lot of the results,” said Diehl. “We’ve definitely got a lot to look forward to this season. It’s still early and we know there’s still a lot of work left. We’re up for the challenge.”

NOTES >> In diving, Methacton’s Julie D’Amore took first (229.05) while Kevin Roy posted a 240.10 as the lone boys’ competitor. The Warriors’ opening losses came to Pennsbury and Souderton.

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